“Voice That Cares”

Psychosocial First Aid (PSFA) Helpline for Public
Dial 8448-8448-45 – 9 am to 9 pm – 7 days a week
Our trained counsellors are here to listen to you & help you find a way forward
Building a Mentally Resilient Nation…

About the Helpline

COVID-19 pandemic has created an environment of prolonged fear and uncertainty resulting in shared trauma and mental health issues across communities. These kinds of situations take an immense toll not only on people’s physical health, but on their mental health and overall wellbeing too. Left untreated, these hidden traumas can cause serious and long-term distress to individuals, families and communities. Mental health and psychosocial support programmes have a priceless impact on the lives of people who need them, particularly when delivered early after an unprecedented crisis. A dedicated community support helpline “Voice That Cares (VTC)” has been launched as a joint initiative of Heartfulness Institute (HFI) and Ripples of Change Foundation (ROCF- https://www.rocf.org/) to provide counselling services to the public. For details, write to vtc@rocf.org.

This Public Helpline provides psychosocial counselling support on a wide range of mental health matters including anxiety, fear, panic attacks, guilt, grief, loneliness, anger, exam stress, pandemic induced psychological issues, stigma, etc, and first aid support for suicidal tendencies, depressive disorders, substance abuse, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and other mental health concerns.

The initiative was launched on 24 June 2021 by Global Guide of Heartfulness, Mr Kamlesh D Patel (Daaji) along with guests of honour – Dr Thiruppugazh, Additional Secretary, National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), Government of India and Dr Sekar Kasi, Professor & Head, Registrar, Center for Psychosocial Support in Disaster (NIMHANS).

The helpline is run with the support of trained committed volunteers and hired executives that provides compassionate and empathetic listening to people in distress.

The primary expected outcome of the “Voice that Cares” initiative is to offer individuals an improved ability to manage their wellbeing and mental health. However, it may be noted that this helpline is not a substitute for medical advice or professional help.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is Psychosocial Health?Psychosocial health is the well-being of an individual in both psychological and social aspects of life. It also refers to the emotional and mental health of an individual. By way of example, emotionally and mentally healthy individuals respond positively to situations, compared to those who are not; hence, irrational thinking may be a sign of poor psychosocial health.

What is Psychosocial First Aid (PSFA) counselling/support?Psychosocial First Aid (PSFA) counseling is a service provided by a trained PSFA counselor to the caller for the purpose of improving well-being, alleviating distress, and enhancing coping skills.It is a humane assistance to support fellow human beings who have recently suffered a seriously stressful situation. The psychosocial well-being of an individual includes both psychological and social well-being.
Early and adequate psychosocial first aid support can help avert distress developing into something more severe; can help individuals to cope up better and become reconciled to everyday life. It is non-intrusive and offers practical care to those in need.

Who is the Voice That Cares Helpline for?The Voice That Cares Helpline is available to anyone in India. The primary focus of this Free Public helpline is to provide Psychosocial First Aid (PSFA) counseling to people who have limited access and affordability to psychosocial and mental health services.

What to expect when I make a call?When you call the Voice That Cares Helpline, you can expect:
● To speak to a trained PSFA counsellor
● A space to vent feelings on any issues in a relaxed, confidential, and non-judgmental atmosphere.
● A reference to an expert who can help.

What all can I speak to you about?Individuals call us with all sorts of concerns and what might be a trivial issue to you may be important to someone else. You could be going through something that has happened recently or have been struggling to cope for some time, either way, we are here if you feel you need some support.
If what is getting to you is not in the following list, please still get in touch.
Common issues for which we receive calls are:
● relationship and family problems
● loss,grief including loss of a friend or a family member through bereavement
● financial worries
● job-related stress or work life balance issues
● school/ college or study-related stress
● Isolation and loneliness
● Depression, anxiety disorders, guilt, self esteem, PTSD
● heavy use of or dependency on alcohol or other drugs
● thoughts of suicide

Is Voice That Cares Helpline right for me?Voice That Cares Helpline may be right for you, if you are looking for an immediate gesture of support. Whenever there is anything that interferes with your psychosocial wellbeing or prevents you from achieving your goals, our trained PSFA counsellors may be able to help.

In which languages are your services available?Currently, the helpline is offering services in English and Hindi but soon will be scaled to other regional languages.

Who staffs the Voice That Cares Helpline?The Helpline is staffed by over 200 trained PSFA counsellors and backed by an advisory panel consisting of senior psychologists/psychiatrists who will provide technical guidance to the team.

How many times can I call the Voice That Cares Helpline?The Voice That Cares Helpline is designed for short-term support. You may feel relieved and helped after just one conversation! If not, you may call the helpline again. However, If you need ongoing support, our PSFA counsellors will help connect you with relevant institutions that can provide you with such support.

What information will I be asked when I call on the Voice That Cares helpline?When you call the helpline, you will be hearing a recorded message that explains how our Helpline can support you. After this message and as per the option you select, you will be connected with one of our trained PSFA counsellors. The PSFA counsellor might ask what would you like to talk about and follow up with some questions about your concern so they can start to understand your situation. You will be asked your name and a brief description of yourself such as state, profession, etc. You need not disclose anything that you are uncomfortable sharing.

What if my call disconnects or if I have to hang up?Phone or network issues can occasionally get in the way. If this happens, please try contacting us again so we can help you.

How can I make the most of my call session?While you are waiting to get connected to our PSFA Trained counsellor, here are a few things that you may like to consider such as: What issue or concern are you wanting to talk about? Can you come up with some examples which may help describe when you started facing your problem? If there is anything you have tried so far to fix your issue or make the situation better? If you have an outcome or goal in mind that you want to achieve by the end of the phone session?

Is my session secure and confidential?Absolute confidentiality is assured, except where required by law. Our trained PSFA counsellors are aware of the importance of confidentiality and are sensitive to ethical confidentiality requirements.
Our helpline generates reporting of pure statistical data that shows how many people accessed the Voice That Cares helpline, and metadata for better service delivery. No names or personal details are shared in this reporting.

Voice That Cares Helpline Terms of Use
● is not a crisis service nor a substitute for medical advice or professional help.
● Don’t assume that all your issues and concerns will be solved in a single phone session. Some issues may be serious and require medical or long-term intervention.
● The purpose of PSFA support is to empower you to get clarity and find your ways or skills to deal with your challenges, and not for the PSFA counsellors to offer their solutions to your problems.
● PSFA counsellors take a no-tolerance approach to any offensive remarks and will terminate the session if this occurs.
● Please be respectful and friendly to the PSFA counsellors you are speaking with.
● The PSFA counsellor is a professional or a volunteer who is offering their time to support individuals in distress. Calling the helpline just to have a friendly conversation may hold up the line and prevent someone in a crisis from receiving timely support.

How can I provide feedback about my experience with Voice That Cares Helpline?We value your opinion and welcome your feedback. You may write to us at vtc@rocf.org to let us know your thoughts and suggestions about our services. Please be advised that your feedback may be used and published by Voice That Cares Helpline for promotion and to engage help seeking behaviour. No personal or identifying information will be used. If you do not want your feedback to be published please let us know.

If I’m not living in India, can I still call?Currently, our Helpline service is available for citizens of India. We recommend checking out other International Helplines that can help you in your country.

I have further questions.Please contact vtc@rocf.org and we will respond.

Empanel Voice That Cares Helpline as your Employee Assistance Programme (EAP)

The Helpline can help your employees deal with personal problems that might adversely impact their work performance, health and overall wellbeing. Organisations have started to recognise that there can be times when additional support is needed for employees. Balancing the pressures of work with the needs of home and personal life can be at times, very stressful. Delivering emotional and physical wellbeing to your employees through our EAP services, can thus lead to increased productivity and positive outcome for your business. To know more about empanelment, please write to vtc@rocf.org

Our helpline can help support employees with a range of issues, including:

  • Stress
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Anger management
  • Emotional problems
  • Relationship difficulties
  • Bereavement
  • Family issues and much more.

Get Involved

You can get involved with the Voice That Cares Helpline in several ways, depending on your area of interest and your capacity.

Write with us

We aim to build a community for psychosocial health through diverse stories, the best way you can get involved is by sharing

  • Your personal stories, poems or pictorial essays of recovery, and coping of your near ones who have experienced any form of mental health issues or concerns.
  • Caregiver stories from family members and friends on supporting a loved one with mental or emotional health concerns and the hopes or intentions that help caregivers in doing so.
  • Independent reviews and suggestions of mental health and wellness apps, movies, recommended books…

Please share your writings and contributions at vtc@rocf.org

Be a Volunteer

We are always looking for volunteers (Graduate preferably in Psychology /Clinical Psychology/Social Science) in any discipline with an interest in psychosocial areas of work with a passion to do community work to extend tele-counselling service in all Indian Regional languages from the comfort of their homes. The process to become a volunteer PSFA counsellor requires volunteers to take part in an extensive training programme before they are permitted to work on the Voice That Cares Helpline.

Voice That Cares volunteers need to be prepared to commit to 10-14 hours each week for at least 12 months after completion of their training for the Helpline.
If you or someone you know, might be interested, fill in the form below!

For any query regarding volunteering opportunities, reach out to us vtc@rocf.org

Partner With Us

If you wish to partner with us and collaborate with us on building an idea or a project, please write to us vtc@rocf.org

Join us as an NGO Partner

ROCF invites all Non-Government Organizations to collaborate with us as a partner. Let us join hands and work together for inclusive growth. For details please write to vtc@rocf.org